Black History Month: A Commemoration


Kayla Gailliard, Writer

Some people wonder why even take the time to celebrate and honor the same people every year for their same contributions and sacrifices. For example, one may say, why continue to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. when everyone knows about him and what he did? It’s like saying, why continue to celebrate the fourth of July when everyone knows why we do and what it’s about. 

The actions, events and decisions that have happened in the past have shaped the way our nation has evolved, especially for African Americans. Everything in history has had a ripple effect on how the world works today. 

With that being said, we continue to annually celebrate Black History Month, encompassing the great contributions and achievements from African Americans, recognizing how far they have come and the success they have brought to this nation. 

For a brief background, Black History Month wasn’t always a month’s worth of celebration and recognition. It originated from a man of the name, Carter G. Woodson. Woodson was an African American historian who saw the history of his people slipping away at the seams and decided to do something about it. He and other unnamed historians, created the event, “Black History Week”, which was declared to always be the second week of February. 

Once the annual event grew and gained more attention even from cultures outside of those who were African American, it was in 1976 that president Gerald Ford designated the entire month of February “Black History Month”. From then on, other countries around the world like Canada and the United Kingdom, also devoted every February to celebrating the history of African Americans. 

Fast forward to today in 2022. As many events have taken place in the past couple years, the Black community has made a lot of history. Main one to date is the Black Lives Matter movement. What some may not know about this movement is that it began way long before things like police violence, injustice for Black people, and inequality started popping up in the news in 2020 after continuous, injusticeful deaths of Black citizens. 

According to, back in 2013, after the death of the 17 year old boy, Trayvon Martin who was wrongly murdered, three women came together and created “A Black-centered political will and movement buliding project called #Blacklivesmatter”.

As this generation continues to push on, still experiencing injustice amongst the Black community despite the many efforts made, having the month of February to honor and celebrate those who have made enormous contributions and sacrifices for the rights of African American citizens that has led to great change and progress is still a big commemoration. 

Spoken from students at WBHS, here are some ways to celebrate those who have down in history as forever known legends.

Juniors, Rokhaya Cameron and Bianca Negron both share their ideas. Cameron says,

“Spreading awareness/information on social media”.

and Negron says,

“Supporting black-owned businesses or contributing to black nonprofits”.

These are just some of many ways to support and recognize the Black community and their efforts to bring about change and success.

So continue to celebrate Martin Luther king Jr. Day.

Continue to celebrate February for the history of African Americans.

Continue to fight for equal rights and never give up.

Do this all in the hopes of keeping great history alive. The history that has led the nation to where it stands today, especially for the lives of Black people.

Caption: Protest in the 1950’s from the Civil Rights Movement

 Caption: Protest from the Black Lives Matter movement in 2020